LISTEN: Anna Beedham explains how the cinema is planning to reopen
As the Coronavirus restrictions ease across Scotland, the Birks Cinema in Aberfeldy is now announcing their timetable for reopening across next month.
Plans for reopening for the cinema start with opening up the café for customers, then another weekend of drive-in cinema and a mobile gig planned ahead too.
Now the Cinema looking to open up again from the first week of June with their newly revamped café.
The Cinema’s Enterprise Director, Anna Beedham, said: “So, the first weekend of June, we are opening our catering operation, but with brand new menus and quite a few new faces as well.
“We just hired a really great new cafe bar manager called Scott, and he came on board only a few weeks ago because it has been very difficult to plan for reopening a cinema in the current climate.”
Crucially for the cinema, safety has been the first concern when it comes to reopening their hospitality.
Anna Beedham continued: “Scott, our new coffee bar manager has come in and he’s got a great background in the hospitality sector and he’s run his own business, he’s worked in across Marks and Spencer’s cafes. So really knows how cafe/bar spaces need to operate, including in terms of the layout.
“Because some of the challenges we’ve had at the cinema in the past is around just the circulation spaces and trying to be provide a comfortable catering offer, but also have big groups of people waiting to go into the cinema.
“So, we’ve really had to look at the spaces that we have and we’re, we’re working towards actually fundraising for a capital refurbishment project for the catering spaces, but that won’t actually happen until the start of next year or going to plan.
“So, we’ve just had a look at what we’ve got and we’ve made some small changes to customer journey coming into the cinema, bearing in mind the COVID restrictions.”
Then, once the café is up and running again, the cinema is going outdoors again to entertain the Aberfeldy audience from their cars.
Over the weekend starting from June 18 and ending on June 20 audiences will be able to enjoy the silver screen from the comfort of their own car.
Anna Beedham said: “The Birks Cinema was the first cinema in Scotland to launch a driving, which is fantastic.
“So, off the success of that, we’ve decided to put another one in and it runs over Father’s Day this year.
“So actually, if anybody’s struggling to find something for their, for their dad, we’ve, we’ve tried to program the Sunday with films that would hopefully tailor to a variety of dads. So that’s, that’s what we’ve got coming up in terms of film in the next few weeks.”
And later in the works is a collaboration with the Perth Theatre to bring Gig on a Truck into Aberfeldy.
Anna Beedham explained: “We’re working with Perth Theater to bring something called gig on a truck, which will be made up of local performers and artists. And we’re actually just trying to locate the right spot for that. And we’ll be announcing that soon.”